You've probably spent hours researching small business ideas. You probably came up with some pretty good ideas. Now, have you written any of your ideas onto paper (or a computer document)? If you haven't, you are spinning your wheels. Your business needs to start on paper, with a business plan. The business plan outline on this page will give you that start you need.
Your business plan needs to be a part of your thoughts and planning from the very beginning. Otherwise, you will forget half of your great ideas in less than two days; you'll forget 85% in six days. Don't worry about changes. Your business plan outline is your own working document; it is a tool for you to use. Change it or add to it as necessary.
Why do you need a business plan outline? That's easy. The most important purpose of your business plan is to help you to remember those great ideas and to turn them into reality. Your business plan outline is your roadmap to success when you start your home based business. It helps you to define and develop your ideas, and to remember them.
Some people think a business plan is only needed if you want to borrow money for your startup business. That's wrong. I built a successful small business without ever showing anybody my business plan. I had one before I spent any time signing contracts or even doing any real work on the business. When I offered to show it to suppliers and lenders, they didn't want to see it. They knew I had a business plan; they saw from my confidence that I knew what I was talking about – because I had a plan. It turned out that I was the only one who read the plan.
So, based on what you just read, you must realize that you are really writing this mainly, or only, for yourself. This business plan outline will guide you through the snow, rain and fog that you will run into during your road to success. It will tell you where you are and where you are going. I know it's hard to believe now, but trust me, it will help you down the road because once you put it on paper, you will remember it.
This is important because your success depends on it:
We are going to make this really simple. For example, where others tell you to write a "Business Plan Executive Summary" and take two pages to describe it, we just write a two or three sentence "Introduction." They talk about Marketing Surveys, Organization and Management, Operational Management, Marketing and Sales Management, Service or Product Lines, Funding Request, Financials and more.
That's crazy. It almost sounds like I'd need a lawyer and a business accountant just to talk to myself!
That's pretty much it. So many people make it sound so complicated, that most people don't write a business plan. Also, most people who don't write a business plan fail. Actually, there is a famous quote I've heard: "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail."
Don't let this newfound information escape your mind. Sit down now, for an hour or less, with pencil and paper and this business plan outline. That outline has eight short steps. Each step should probably take between two and four sentences – probably one page. After you write it with pencil and paper, you can type it into the computer. That will help you to edit your new business plan and polish it up. You can always change, update or expand your business plan as needed. For example, if you find a banker that has a fetish about fancy business plans, this business plan outline will help you create a fancier one.
Now it's time to celebrate. Treat yourself to a dish of ice cream. You deserve it. By writing your business plan, you have officially started your home based business. Congratulations. You are closer to success than 90% of the people who think about starting a home based business.
Since our goal is to have a successful business, let's follow one accomplishment with another. While you are celebrating with your ice cream (or other treat), let's look at something else to keep our creative juices flowing. Check This Out . It could be very useful right now; especially if you haven't nailed down your business goals yet.
Good luck on turning your desires into success and happiness.